i8o HISTORY OF PERSIA CHAP. exclaiming that it was a Holy War ensuring Paradise, swept them off the field, with a loss of more than half their numbers. After making a triumphal entry into Caesarea, Bay- bars, finding that the princes of Asia Minor ^ared not join him from fear of Abaga, retired to Damascus, where he died. Abaga, too late to retrieve the disaster, marched through Asia Minor, inflicting punishment on those who had failed in their duty with merciless severity, and upon his return to Persia sacrificed the Governor of Asia Minor to the resentment of the widows of his defeated soldiers. The Battle of Hims, A.H. 680 (1281).—Burning to avenge the disaster of Abulistin, Abaga took advantage of a revolution in Egypt to invade Syria, and a great battle was fought near Hims, in the vicinity of the tomb of Khalid, the famous Moslem general. As at Abulistin, the battle began with a charge of the Mongol left wing, which, however, was repulsed. The Egyptians in turn charged and routed the Mongol left, but as an offset to this success their own left was broken by the right Mongol wing, which pursued it to the gates of Hims. There the Mongols occupied themselves with looting while awaiting the main body, whose success they never questioned. But meanwhile the Mongol centre, under Mangu-Timur, the brother of Abaga, had broken and fled, and consequently the Egyptians remained masters of the field ; in the pursuit which ensued the Mongol losses were heavy.1 This was the last expedition under- taken by Abaga, who died in the following year. The Intercourse of Abaga with Europe.—Christendom, represented by the Pope, had, as already mentioned, made friendly overtures to the Mongols, whose protection of Christians had become known. At this period quite a correspondence ensued with Abaga, much of which has been preserved. Among the letters, that written by Edward I. of England is of special interest, and is given as a heading to this chapter. In pursuance of his policy, 1 An interesting contemporary account of this battle, which makes the Mongol defeat seem less severe, is found in a letter from Joseph de Cancy, a Knight Hospitaller, to King Edward I. of England. A translation of this document and of the reply to it is given. 4n Howorth's op. cit. vol. iii. p. 763 ff.